Hacia la Universidad Emprendedora

Hacia la Universidad Emprendedora

Hacia la Universidad Emprendedora

Monday, February 1, 2021, by María Fernanda Andrés

Actualmente, la sociedad exige a las universidades mayor involucramiento en el proceso de desarrollo económico y social del territorio. Esto ha dado lugar a una nueva consideración de la institución, aquella que combine e integre las actividades tradicionales con la contribución al desarrollo económico y social. Esta nueva consideración de sus funciones como emprendedora requiere un rediseño de su estrategia global, a fin de que le permita afrontar los retos que le impone su nuevo rol en la sociedad. La promoción y difusión de la cultura emprendedora dentro de sí misma y en todos sus niveles (docencia, investigación y extensión), se muestra como pieza clave para promover la contribución económica y social de una manera realmente eficaz.

Para ello, habrá que tener  en cuenta una serie de actividades específicas (que involucren habilidades y actitudes) que permitan a las personas afrontar creativamente el entorno cambiante. Se trata, en definitiva, de un conjunto de actitudes y valores que hacen de los emprendedores protagonistas de su futuro, en una sociedad del conocimiento orientada a un progreso sostenible y cohesionado. En su doble función, social y económica, la educación y la formación requieren un papel fundamental a la hora de garantizar que todas las personas adquieran las competencias necesarias para adaptarse con flexibilidad a estos cambios.

El desafío de la política pública actual no es solo desarrollar las capacidades emprendedoras de las personas que asisten a las universidades para graduarse y obtener un título, sino que en un sentido amplio del concepto, las “Universidades Emprendedoras” son agentes clave para el desarrollo socioeconómico de sus territorios.

Para innovar, las pymes y los emprendedores deben poseer una gama de capacidades internas que se puedan desarrollar desde la universidad para impulsar la productividad. Los desajustes de habilidades son una razón fundamental de inactividad entre los jóvenes que enfrentan dificultades en la transición de la escuela al trabajo (OCDE, 2013). Para muchas pymes y emprendedores, el principal problema es tener acceso a las capacidades que puedan acelerar su comprensión de cómo superar problemas, errores y fracasos, reduciendo costos, creando nuevas oportunidades y promoviendo el crecimiento.

Existe una profunda riqueza en cómo cada institución satisface las necesidades de su territorio y la idiosincrasia de su población. Las raíces culturales, tecnológicas o académicas están impulsando ecosistemas emprendedores en los que las universidades se convierten en actores centrales, y este espacio se ve claramente en actividades vinculadas a municipios, cámaras empresariales, cooperativas o espacios de desarrollo local.

La universidad emprendedora es aquella que se capacita en competencias personales para desempeñarse en un mundo cada vez más dinámico, facilitando además metodologías ágiles para planificar, fallar y aprender lo más rápido posible. Podría definirse como el punto de encuentro para acumular capital social y redes de apoyo, buscando emparejar oportunidades, compartiendo agendas. Este tipo de universidad diseña dispositivos educativos que fomentan la creatividad y el emprendimiento. Brinda a los estudiantes la asistencia técnica necesaria para quienes quieren emprender una empresa y abre sus puertas a modelos positivos que fomentan el emprendimiento.

Autora

Mg. María Fernanda Andrés

Mg. María Fernanda Andrés

Directora de Negocios de ACELERADORA LITORAL.

Directora de Negocios de ACELERADORA LITORAL. Profesora de la Universidad Nacional del Litoral y Universidad Nacional de Rafaela de Argentina. Presidenta del International Council for Small Business, filial Argentina (2018-2019).

Industria Fintech. ¿Instituciones financieras emergentes para pymes?

Industria Fintech. ¿Instituciones financieras emergentes para pymes?

Industria Fintech. ¿Instituciones financieras emergentes para pymes?

Monday, January 25, 2021, by Rubén Ascúa

El mundo emprendedor y de pymes, incluyendo a las instituciones de apoyo y a los propios gobiernos, considera el financiamiento como uno de los tres temas más importantes para la promoción de pymes y en particular de las nuevas empresas. En el caso de las nuevas empresas tecnológicas, la gestión del financiamiento cobra especial relevancia debido a la existencia de barreras específicas para acceder a los recursos, ya que se trata de empresas con un componente importante de activos intangibles y una elevada dosis de incertidumbre producto de su carácter innovativo.

Por otra parte, los distintos desarrollos tecnológicos que han tenido lugar durante la última década, junto con los nuevos modelos de negocio que estos han generado, están modificando la industria de los servicios financieros. Hoy es imposible analizar el sector sin tener en cuenta el impacto de las nuevas tecnologías financieras y de los emprendedores o compañías “Fintech” que las implementan. Son estos los nuevos actores que compiten con las instituciones financieras tradicionales y desafían sus consolidados modelos de negocio.

Las empresas FinTech se dedican a intermediar en el mercado financiero de diversos modos, en las transferencias de dinero (remesas), en los préstamos, en las transacciones de cobros y pagos, en la intermediación en los mercados de capitales (asesoramiento financiero y de inversiones). Es evidente que todavía se discute si la trasformación de la industria de servicios financieros tendrá lugar por la vía de la competencia o más bien de la colaboración entre unas y otras. A su vez, se ha ido generando una creciente expectativa sobre su contribución a la reducción de la brecha de financiamiento que afecta en particular al sector de las pymes y jóvenes empresas.

Por un lado, el surgimiento de nuevas plataformas e intermediarios financieros en línea, con menores costos de transacción y nuevas técnicas y fuentes de información para evaluar el riesgo crediticio, podría contribuir a expandir el acceso a financiamiento de las PyME. Por otro lado, la existencia de soluciones para pagos y herramientas digitales para lograr un mejor desempeño financiero empresarial, no solo facilitaría la digitalización y formalización de estos negocios, sino que además el historial de sus transacciones podría facilitar la evaluación del riesgo de crédito involucrado, creando nuevas opciones para resolver asimetrías de información, reduciendo el riesgo moral y la selección adversa que sufren las empresas pymes.

 Pese a la expansión de las FinTechs en la última década, sus volúmenes de financiación son pequeños en proporción al tamaño de la economía y las financiaciones a través de entidades “convencionales”. Se destacan las financiaciones FinTechs en China, EEUU y Reino Unido. En América Latina la evolución del sector Fintech ha sido vertiginoso, concentrándose en el segmento de las finanzas familiares.

¿Es esperable que las Fintechs eficienticen el acceso al financiamiento de las pymes y jóvenes empresas en América Latina?  Con este artículo iniciamos una serie que apunta a analizar la revolución FinTech e intentar responder al interrogante planteado.

 

Autor

Dr. Rubén Ascúa

Dr. Rubén Ascúa

Rector UnRaf

Profesor en las Universidades Tecnológica Nacional, de General Sarmiento y del Litoral en Argentina; y en la de Ciencias Aplicadas de Kaiserslautern, en Alemania. Presidente de la Asociación Civil Red Pymes MERCOSUR. President of  International Council for Small Business (ICSB 2014-2015). Director de A&M Ciencias Económicas.

The secret letters of history’s first-known businesswomen

The secret letters of history’s first-known businesswomen

New research gives us insights into history’s first well-documented businesswomen, who made their mark earlier than you may think.

Friday, January 15, 2021, by BBC

New research gives us insights into history’s first well-documented businesswomen, who made their mark earlier than you may think.

Friday, January 15, 2021, by BBC

The letters, though tiny, contained a wealth of insight into this ancient world of commerce (Credit: Cecile Michel, Archaeological Mission of Kültepe)

The letters, though tiny, contained a wealth of insight into this ancient world of commerce (Credit: Cecile Michel, Archaeological Mission of Kültepe)

Around 1870BC, in the city of Assur in northern Iraq, a woman called Ahaha uncovered a case of financial fraud. 

Ahaha had invested in long-distance trade between Assur and the city of Kanesh in Turkey. She and other investors had pooled silver to finance a donkey caravan delivering tin and textiles to Kanesh, where the goods would be exchanged for more silver, generating a tidy profit. But Ahaha’s share of the profits seemed to have gone missing – possibly embezzled by one of her own brothers, Buzazu. So, she grabbed a reed stylus and clay tablet and scribbled a letter to another brother, Assur-mutappil, pleading for help: 

“I have nothing else apart from these funds,” she wrote in cuneiform script. “Take care to act so that I will not be ruined!” She instructed Assur-mutappil to recover her silver and update her quickly. “Let a detailed letter from you come to me by the very next caravan, saying if they do pay the silver,” she wrote in another tablet. “Now is the time to do me a favour and to save me from financial stress!” 

Ahaha’s letters are among 23,000 clay tablets excavated over the past decades from the ruins of merchants’ homes in Kanesh. They belonged to Assyrian expats who had settled in Kanesh and kept up a lively correspondence with their families back in Assur, which lay six weeks away by donkey caravan. A new book gives unprecedented insight into a remarkable group within this community: women who seized new opportunities offered by social and economic change, and took on roles more typically filled by men at the time. They became the first-known businesswomen, female bankers and female investors in the history of humanity. 

‘Strong and independent’ 

The bulk of the letters, contracts and court rulings found in Kanesh date from around 1900-1850 BC, a period when the Assyrians’ trading network was flourishing, bringing prosperity to the region and giving rise to many innovations. The Assyrians invented certain forms of investment and were also among the first men and women to write their own letters, rather than dictating them to professional scribes. It’s thanks to these letters that we can hear a chorus of vibrant female voices telling us that even in the distant past, commerce and innovation were not the exclusive domains of men.

The ancient city of Kanesh, also known as Kültepe mound, in what is now Turkey (Credit: Archaeological Mission of Kültepe Archives)

                        The ancient city of Kanesh, also known as Kültepe mound, in what is now Turkey (Credit: Archaeological Mission of Kültepe Archives)

Female Business Leaders, Business and Cultural Environment, and Productivity Around the World

Female Business Leaders, Business and Cultural Environment, and Productivity Around the World

Female Business Leaders, Business and Cultural Environment, and Productivity Around the World

Wednesday, January 13, 2021, by World Bank Group

Female Business Leaders, Business and Cultural Environment, and Productivity Around the World

Wednesday, January 13, 2021, by World Bank Group

While women are beginning to get ahead of men in selective countries in a few areas, such as college admission, in both high-paying and leadership jobs, women continue to lag significantly behind.

Studies of female business leaders and economic performance are rarely conducted with worldwide observational data, and with considerations on the underlying cultural, institutional, and business environment. This paper uses worldwide, firm-level data from more than 100 countries to study how female-headed firms differ from male-headed firms in productivity level and growth, and whether the female leader performance disparity hinges on the underlying environment. Female-headed firms account for about 11 percent of firms and are more prevalent in countries with better rule of law, gender equality, and stronger individualistic culture. On average, female-headed firms have 9 to 16 percent lower productivity and 1.6 percentage points lower labor productivity growth, compared with male-headed firms. The disadvantage is mainly in manufacturing firms, largely nonexistent in service firms, and present in relatively small firms. Although the female leader performance disadvantage is surprisingly not related to gender equality, it is smaller where there is less emphasis on personal networks (better rule of law, lower trade credit linkages, lower usage of bank credit, and more equalizing internet), less competition, and the culture is more collective. The study does not find that the female leader disadvantage is amplified in corrupt environments. Africa differs significantly in that it features lower female disadvantage, stronger female advantage in services relative to manufacturing, and stronger sensitivity of female business leaders to electricity provision and bank credit access. (Read more…)

Rethinking the Entrepreneurial University and all that Jazz: The Campus Radio, Edutainment, and Youth Development

Rethinking the Entrepreneurial University and all that Jazz: The Campus Radio, Edutainment, and Youth Development

Rethinking the Entrepreneurial University and all that Jazz: The Campus Radio, Edutainment, and Youth Development 

Monday, January 11, 2021 Dr. Nnamdi O. Madichie

Rethinking the Entrepreneurial University and all that Jazz: The Campus Radio, Edutainment, and Youth Development 

Monday, January 11, 2021

In putting this opinion piece together, I would like to start with an important question. 

How can universities demonstrate entrepreneurialism beyond the usual suspects? 

What are these usual suspects? Commercialisation of research? Navigating uncharted waters? And relevant to the current pandemic climate – is all about developing a vaccine and providing scientific advice? 

No disrespect to the good job of global players providing intelligence on vaccines and communicating numbers on the “R” rates – John Hopkins University, Imperial College, and Oxford University, to name just a few. While universities play a big role in saving lives, there is also the need for preserving livelihoods. 

As a social scientist, my interest in this article takes a slightly different perspective that hinges upon the humane entrepreneurship narrative and the 4Es empathy, equity, enablement and empowerment that have been at the core of the ICSB – especially concerns over enabling and empowering the youth with a view to serving the full social purpose of universities. (Read more…).

USAID Scholars Activity Offers Scholarships to 140 Public School Students this Year to Study at AUC, Egyptian Universities

USAID Scholars Activity Offers Scholarships to 140 Public School Students this Year to Study at AUC, Egyptian Universities

USAID Scholars Activity Offers Scholarships to 140 Public School Students this Year to Study at AUC, Egyptian Universities

January, Jan 5, 2021, by AUC Egypt

AUC recently signed a Memorandum of Understanding with Egypt’s Ministry of Education and Technical Education to promote the United States Agency for International Development (USAID) Scholars Activity program in schools.

The USAID Scholars Activity, implemented and managed by AUC, is offering scholarships to 140 Egyptian public school students in the 2020-2021 academic year to study at AUC and Egyptian public and private universities. AUC’s partner universities in the program are Ain Shams University, Alexandria University, Cairo University, Assiut University, Mansoura University and Zewail City of Science and Technology.

“We are happy with the opportunities that the USAID Scholars Activity program provides to thanawiya amma high school students and proud of the 140 students who received the scholarships this academic year,” said Egypt’s Minister of Education and Technical Education Tarek Shawki. “The ministry spares no effort to develop the skills of our students by providing them with all the available excellent educational opportunities.”

The $36 million USAID Scholars Activity targets 700 students from Egypt’s 27 governorates over 10 years. The students are identified by high academic excellence, leadership potential and financial need. For the first cohort, the program’s majors are agriculture, energy, water, computer science, environmental engineering, journalism, data science, business and economics.

“We look forward to our collaboration with the Ministry of Education,” said AUC Provost Ehab Abdel-Rahman. “Such collaboration will ensure that talented students in public schools will have an opportunity to apply to the USAID Scholars Activity program and get a chance to excel in their chosen fields of study.”

The USAID Scholars Activity will cover five consecutive cohorts, and the selection process commits to gender balance and overall accessibility. This year, 65 female and 75 male students, including 13 students with disabilities, joined the cohort to advance diversity and higher education inclusion.

AUC has welcomed 25 students this year. Assiut, Mansoura and Ain Shams universities have each welcomed 23 students, while 22 students have joined Alexandria University, 17 have joined Cairo University and seven have joined Zewail City of Science and Technology. This year, 24% of students chose an engineering major as their top major of choice, followed by agriculture.

This collaboration between USAID and AUC contributes to Egypt’s 2030 Sustainable Development Strategy by instilling the pillars of knowledge, innovation and scientific research, economic development and environmental responsibility in the activity’s core infrastructure.

Centering Innovative Solutions for Tangible Change

Centering Innovative Solutions for Tangible Change

Centering Innovative Solutions for Tangible Change

Saturday, December 26, 2020, by Ayman El Tarabishy, President and CEO of ICSB

In conjunction with last Saturday’s Reflection on the importance of Research with Impact, this week’s Reflection challenges us to think about ways to implement innovative solutions that focus on providing explicit, material benefits and resources to those who need them most.  

Here at ICSB, we strive to be a useful and impactful resource for MSMEs and other individuals looking for an informed, educational, and empathetic analysis of the current business ecosystem. We believe that our focus on Humane Entrepreneurship and our emphasis on empowering atypical actors in the current business environment provides a blueprint for the future while maximizing potential and sustainability in the present. 

However, in general, educational resources and knowledge can only be valuable if they result in real, tangible changes to our day-to-day realities. The rapid advancement of technology and the explosion of the digital economy have multiplied how businesses and entrepreneurs can make an impact and translate their knowledge and lived experience into positive social improvement. 

This advancement of technology and the opening of new economic frontiers is an encouraging sign for us to believe positive change is necessary and inevitable. Our increased data capacity has led to an explosion of innovative ideas and solutions to problems that have plagued businesses and investors for decades while empowering those atypical actors that have been overlooked for far too long. 

We must make sure data do not freeze us. Too often, businesses and entrepreneurs become consumed with collecting and analyzing data in the hopes of crafting a “perfect” solution to the diverse set of challenges we face. The sheer size of the digital sphere has overwhelmed those in power with information. 

Is this cautious approach not in direct conflict with the very spirit of entrepreneurship? 

The people who take the risk to pursue their passions and interests in the hopes of improving their communities and lives cannot afford to wait for the perfect situation or the right numbers to illuminate the way. Conditions are not always ideal, and the enormous benefit of MSMEs is often felt by those caught up in challenging circumstances. Life is about being bold, trying new things, and pushing forward despite the protests of those around you. Progress is impossible otherwise.  

At ICSB, we believe that tying ‘Research with Impact’ to the practice of sustainable and bold innovation is the only way to move toward progress consistently. Just as our research means little without action, we must be sure that our efforts are backed up by proper, people-centered research that emphasizes transparency, accountability, and communal involvement. The relationship between studying the problems and working on solutions must be firm and flexible. 

The COVID-19 pandemic has shown us the benefits of acting quickly and confidently in the face of an overwhelming obstacle and the consequences of pretending that the obstruction does not exist. Putting ideas into practice and providing marginalized, atypical actors with actual institutional power is the only way to ensure the long-lasting impact we make. For too long, those in power have tried to pay lip service to equity and diversity. In the face of our modern-day challenges, talking the talk is no longer good enough from the pandemic to climate change. Together, we must face the challenges of the future head-on and walk towards a better world. 

This is why I write to you about the business’s practical side for our last Saturday Reflection of 2020. As we are propelled forward into a new world and a new year, let’s be sure to center the real and actual work of entrepreneurs and small business owners. Through the ICSB Marketplace, a featured program at the 2021 World Congress, we hope to empower this tangible action towards supporting the needs and desires of entrepreneurs because it is here where real entrepreneurship flourishes. 

Article by:

Ayman El Tarabishy,
President and CEO, ICSB
Deputy Chair, Department of Management

Centering Innovative Solutions for Tangible Change

Centering Innovative Solutions for Tangible Change

Centering Innovative Solutions for Tangible Change

Saturday, December 26, 2020, by Ayman El Tarabishy, President and CEO of ICSB

In conjunction with last Saturday’s Reflection on the importance of Research with Impact, this week’s Reflection challenges us to think about ways to implement innovative solutions that focus on providing explicit, material benefits and resources to those who need them most.  

Here at ICSB, we strive to be a useful and impactful resource for MSMEs and other individuals looking for an informed, educational, and empathetic analysis of the current business ecosystem. We believe that our focus on Humane Entrepreneurship and our emphasis on empowering atypical actors in the current business environment provides a blueprint for the future while maximizing potential and sustainability in the present. 

However, in general, educational resources and knowledge can only be valuable if they result in real, tangible changes to our day-to-day realities. The rapid advancement of technology and the explosion of the digital economy have multiplied how businesses and entrepreneurs can make an impact and translate their knowledge and lived experience into positive social improvement. 

This advancement of technology and the opening of new economic frontiers is an encouraging sign for us to believe positive change is necessary and inevitable. Our increased data capacity has led to an explosion of innovative ideas and solutions to problems that have plagued businesses and investors for decades while empowering those atypical actors that have been overlooked for far too long. 

We must make sure data do not freeze us. Too often, businesses and entrepreneurs become consumed with collecting and analyzing data in the hopes of crafting a “perfect” solution to the diverse set of challenges we face. The sheer size of the digital sphere has overwhelmed those in power with information. 

Is this cautious approach not in direct conflict with the very spirit of entrepreneurship? 

The people who take the risk to pursue their passions and interests in the hopes of improving their communities and lives cannot afford to wait for the perfect situation or the right numbers to illuminate the way. Conditions are not always ideal, and the enormous benefit of MSMEs is often felt by those caught up in challenging circumstances. Life is about being bold, trying new things, and pushing forward despite the protests of those around you. Progress is impossible otherwise.  

At ICSB, we believe that tying ‘Research with Impact’ to the practice of sustainable and bold innovation is the only way to move toward progress consistently. Just as our research means little without action, we must be sure that our efforts are backed up by proper, people-centered research that emphasizes transparency, accountability, and communal involvement. The relationship between studying the problems and working on solutions must be firm and flexible. 

The COVID-19 pandemic has shown us the benefits of acting quickly and confidently in the face of an overwhelming obstacle and the consequences of pretending that the obstruction does not exist. Putting ideas into practice and providing marginalized, atypical actors with actual institutional power is the only way to ensure the long-lasting impact we make. For too long, those in power have tried to pay lip service to equity and diversity. In the face of our modern-day challenges, talking the talk is no longer good enough from the pandemic to climate change. Together, we must face the challenges of the future head-on and walk towards a better world. 

This is why I write to you about the business’s practical side for our last Saturday Reflection of 2020. As we are propelled forward into a new world and a new year, let’s be sure to center the real and actual work of entrepreneurs and small business owners. Through the ICSB Marketplace, a featured program at the 2021 World Congress, we hope to empower this tangible action towards supporting the needs and desires of entrepreneurs because it is here where real entrepreneurship flourishes. 

Article by:

Ayman El Tarabishy,
President and CEO, ICSB
Deputy Chair, Department of Management

Importance of Research with Impact

Importance of Research with Impact

Importance of Research with Impact

Saturday, December 19, 2020, by Ayman El Tarabishy, President and CEO of ICSB

As the fundamentals of the business ecosystem have been upended in the COVID-19 era, too has our relationship to research and statistical data. The same technologies that have brought businesses and consumers closer together have complicated and altered the idea of a balanced and objective truth. As we continue to rely upon data and statistical research to point us in the right direction during an increasingly unstable time, we must examine the impact and consequences of this data and make sure it is being used for humane and sustainable solutions.

The ubiquity of social media and the ability to communicate with virtually anyone at virtually any time has drastically changed the ways we relate to one another. Education has become less about “discovering” new information and more about learning how to sift between good and wrong information. As we begin to think about new ways to communicate new ideas and strategies effectively, we believe that researching with impact is the best way to create a knowledge ecosystem that guides and supports the new and emerging business ecosystem that we envision here at ICSB.

What do we mean by a knowledge ecosystem? First, we recognize the importance of local businesses and consumers having the agency diagnose and solve the issues facing their communities. We reject the idea that there is a one-size-fits-all solution to the myriad problems facing the world today. We want to empower actors within the business community to have the framework to create new and innovative solutions to the issues they face now and in the future.

Secondly, we understand that people will use and rely on different sources of information in the era of social media and global connectivity. The purpose of ICSB and the educational resources that we provide is not to claim that we have all the solutions; instead, we believe we are building a community of driven, empathetic individuals who recognize the issues faced and believe that there are ideals and principles that we should prioritize in the re-making of our business world. That is why we think that researching with impact is crucial to our larger goals of promoting equity and justice within the business ecosystem and empowering atypical actors worldwide.

Why is it essential to emphasize researching with impact? We have seen the consequences of research for research’s sake, whether in the continued dismissal of atypical and marginalized individuals or the refusal to recognize the effects of unsustainable investment and production. Too often, the consequences of oppression have been used to justify the continuation of that same oppression. Women are not underrepresented in managerial and leadership positions because they are “too emotional” or lack the necessary experience. They are underrepresented because women have faced structural issues and oppression that have limited their ability to advance and be recognized within the formal leadership structure. The solution to this cannot merely be more research. Research is often presented after the fact to groups of people who knew the outcomes of that research would be far before they were given. It has to be research committed to uncovering the consequences of this past behavior and providing a framework for realistic and just solutions. There is a desperate need for accurate and impactful research that centers on justice and sustainability principles. We believe that organizations like ICSB are the blueprint for what the process of creating sustainable and impactful research will look like.

If you are interested in research with impact, we welcome you to submit to our 2021 World Congress call for papers to be held in Paris, France in person and online. We urge you to engage with essential topics in business research and the type of research necessary in and sign for our recreation of this world into one that focuses on equitable sustainability. We surely hope you will join us on this journey.

Start here: https://icsb2021.com/call-for-papers/

Article by:

Ayman El Tarabishy,
President and CEO, ICSB
Deputy Chair, Department of Management